Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, 20th May 2021
The Saudi Development and Reconstruction Program for Yemen (SDRPY) and the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) have launched an Executive Program for development cooperation in Yemen, with the aim of strengthening the strategic partnership between the two sides, uniting development efforts, and building the future vision for development and reconstruction in Yemen in cooperation with the Yemeni Government and development partners.
The Executive Program was signed by IsDB President Dr. Bandar Hajjar, and SDRPY General Supervisor, Ambassador Mohammad bin Saeed Al Jaber. The signing ceremony was attended by a number of officials from both sides.
The President of the Islamic Development Bank, Dr. Bandar Hajjar, expressed hope that the Program will be a starting point for further joint cooperation between SDRPY and IsDB to support socio-economic development in the Republic of Yemen, especially, in light of these difficult circumstances that Yemen is going through. “Several paths have been laid down by the Program outlining areas of cooperation, and we are keen to translate them into jointly implementable programs and projects between the Bank and the Saudi Program in the short, medium, and long terms,”
In order to activate this program, Dr. Hajjar called for the continuation of holding technical meetings between the two teams on all tracks that were agreed upon to exchange information and experiences, in addition to coming up with joint projects that could be implemented. “We have to think about how to benefit from the experience of the Country Platform that the Bank recently introduced to help its member countries respond to COVID-19 pandemic by developing a mechanism for monitoring and exchanging information on development projects and programs between various development partners,” he elaborated.
Dr. Hajjar also called on both teams to discuss a mechanism for setting up a unified and clear strategic plan for the support and development of Yemen, which brings together all development partners and supporters with the participation of the Yemeni legitimate Government. “The Saudi Program can coordinate this scheme in order to unite efforts to achieve maximum benefit from international support and to prevent duplication and dispersion of efforts and resources” he concluded.
For his part, the General Supervisor of the Saudi Development and Reconstruction Program for Yemen, Ambassador Mohammad bin Saeed Al Jaber, said in a statement during the signing of the Executive Program that the signing of the Program comes within the framework of building a strategic partnership in support of the Yemeni Government to serve the Yemeni people by strengthening the efforts of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to serve Yemen under the guidance of The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, and His Highness the Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman - may God protect them. “This occasion confirms the keenness of both SDRPY and IsDB to contribute to achieving comprehensive and sustainable development throughout Yemen” he said. “By the grace of God, a number of programs that were implemented either by the Bank or by the Program have been realized in various aspects of economic and social development in Yemen,” he explained.
Ambassador Al Jaber, then, explained that the Executive Program will support the unification of efforts and joint projects implemented by different players including the Saudi Program, the Bank Group, and the international development community to support the Yemeni Government's efforts in building a future road map for development and reconstruction in Yemen. He added that the Program will support the implementation of Development projects in various Yemeni Governorates, in partnership between the two sides and the Yemeni Government. “One of the fruits of this Executive Program will be the building of an electronic platform with the aim of uniting efforts and highlighting the contributions of donors and clarifying the development gaps in various sectors to coordinate and direct efforts towards the real needs,” he said.
Al Jaber emphasized that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is one of the largest contributors to development, reconstruction and direct economic support to Yemen through the Saudi Program, which has nearly 200 development projects and initiatives in such sectors as education, health, water, energy, agriculture and fisheries, transportation, and construction. Moreover, many Saudi Government Agencies, support Yemen in in all fields.
The Executive Program contributes to expanding existing joint projects in cooperation with the Yemeni Government, introduces new projects for youth, rural growth, women's empowerment and labor-intensive projects. It also supports the literacy program, confrontation with the COVID-19 pandemic, raising efficiency and quality of local agricultural production, and promotion of agricultural exports in Yemen. Furthermore, it supports the private sector and strengthens its role in development, within a framework that ensures the effectiveness of development work and builds the capacities of the Yemeni Government and institutions.
The areas of cooperation between the two sides, in coordination with the Yemeni Government and institutions, include 6 tracks, i.e., vision and the strategy for development, reconstruction and economic recovery in Yemen, digital and technological cooperation and knowledge exchange, strategic planning for partnership in development projects and programs as well as the completion of incomplete projects and programs of the Islamic Development Bank. They also include strategic communication and information, investment for sustainable development, empowerment of the private sector, and the implementation of IsDB Group funded projects.